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Between Pets and People: The Importance of Animal Companionship Paperback – September 1, 1996
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From the Back Cover
Since the first edition of Between Pets and People in 1983, the authors' then-startling contention that pets benefit our mental and physical health has found wide acceptance. Evidence in our daily lives - in television pet food ads, in doctor's offices outfitted with aquaria - attests to how widely the belief in pets' therapeutic influence is now held. This revised edition of Between Pets and People, with additional data and case studies and expanded references - including a listing of Internet resources - and a foreword by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, analyzes the surprisingly complex relationships we have with our pets. This book contains an important lesson for everyone - to accept ourselves and others in the uncritical way that pets accept us, and come to terms with our own animal nature.
About the Author
Dr. Alan Beck is the Dorothy N. McAllister Professor of Animal Ecology at Purdue University. Before coming to Purdue, Beck directed the Center for the Interaction of Animals and Society at the University of Pennsylvania and was director of animal programs for the New York City Department of Health.Aaron Katcher continues some work at the University of Pennsylvania veterinary school, but spends most of his time in research at the Devereaux Foundation, Brandywine, Pa. The foundation offers residential treatment of severely disturbed children.
Top customer reviews
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The book is an easy read, and I found myself 3/4 of the way through it the first night. Not only is the topic interesting, but the writing skill is commendable -- it is written with a nice balance of active/passive voice.
It explained to me, in easy layman terms, the physiological benefits of pet companionship. It also explains why we psycologically find pet 'ownership' so satisfying.
Other books have explored this human-pet relationship through pictures -- "Guys and Dogs", "Woman's Best Friend", "New York Dogs" and they have done a fine job with the pictures.
The authors of "Between Pets and People" have now given us the words and facts to explain our feelings for our pets, And through the facts and explanations emerges a legitimacy for the pet-people relationship that didn't exist before. As you read the book you discover as much about yourself as you do about animal companionship.
This book belongs on your bookshelf!
This book is outstanding and I would highly recommend it for EVERY dog owner and POTENTIAL dog owner.
In addition to discussing the reasons why people choose pets, as well as discussing traits of pets themselves, the authors address other very important topics. Some of the topics discussed are: euthanasia; dog bites -- causes, statistics, solutions; strays -- how to identify them from wandering but owned dogs, and the health problems strays pose; dog packs -- how they operate and the dangers of packs. The authors included a table, The Urban Stray Dog, which is helpful in identifying the difference between an 'Owned Dog' and an 'Unowned Dog.' Also addressed are the diseases that dogs and pets can pass on to humans, their occurrence, and solutions to these disease threats. Not left out are issues such as dealing with people who have too many pets -- and how this type of multiple ownership causes problem for other urban dwellers; the traits of these multiple pet owners are also discussed. Dog laws are also discussed as are poop scoop laws.
The back of the book lists books and articles that the reader might find helpful under various topics discussed in the book; also listed are resource to be found on the internet on topics such as Pets in Therapy, Pet Information, Animal Behavior, Animal Care, Pet Loss, and Veterinary Education and Professional Services.
The book discussed other companion animals as well, but as a dog owner, I tended to focus my review on those issues relevant to me. I do not mean to bias you against the book by excluding mention of other companion animals addressed in the book. This book is probably one of the most comprehensive books I have read about companion animals and the issues surrounding them.
This book covers issues not dealt with in any other book I have read -- yet knowledge of these issues is necessary for being a responsible pet owner. No matter what your pet, you ought to give this book a read. It is a very easy and interesting read, the balance between active and passive voice tends to draw you into the context and makes it hard to put down. I thoroughly enjoyed it.